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Two charged in theft of copper pipe, water heater

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Published September 04. 2018 04:52AM

Lansford police have filed charges against two men who stole copper and various items from a residence in the borough.

One of the defendants, Francis Chambers, 30, of Tamaqua, is still wanted for burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, criminal trespass, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief. The other defendant in the case, Chase Alexander Costic, 23, of Minersville, was taken into custody and faces the same charges as Chambers.

According to an affidavit filed by Lansford police, on Aug. 29, officers were called to West Water Street for a break-in that was currently happening.

When officers arrived, the witness said she saw two men, later identified as Chambers and Costic, carrying items out of the rear of the home and placing them in a blue vehicle.

Police saw that a lower rear window had been opened and the back door of the home in question had been forced open. Copper piping and a hot water heater were taken from the house. Police had been called to the home in May and June to check on the property and all pipes and the water heater were intact then.

Following the sweep of the building, police found two men who matched the witness’ description walking along Tunnel Street.

Security footage from a neighboring home showed Chambers and Costic in the area at the time of the burglary.

Police found that the vehicle was owned by Chambers’ sister and the pair was using it without her permission.

Officers then interviewed a man who was baby-sitting for Chambers’ sister, and he told police that he had seen a water heater sitting in the back passenger seat of the vehicle in question.

Costic was arrested and arraigned on Aug. 30 before District Judge Casimir Kosciolek and free on $1,000 unsecured bail. He faces a preliminary hearing before Kosciolek on Sept. 12.

Chambers told police he would turn himself in but never showed up.

Lansford police describe Chambers as a white man who stands 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs 165 pounds with brown hair and eyes. He frequents the Panther Valley and Tamaqua areas.

Police are asking that if anyone sees Chambers to call 911 or your local police department. Confidential information can also be given by calling Lansford police at 570-645-5844.

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